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Hamster Run-O-Meter

Measure its speed and distance covered

Hamster Run-O-Meter
If you have a pet hamster, you’re likely to have one of these in its cage: a hamster wheel in which they can run to their heart’s content (or to the annoyance of their owners at night). For the electronics hobbyist this begs for some experimentation. Not on the animal of course (that’s for the biological scientists), but on the wheel. In this simple project we show you how to log its top speed and the total distance it covered.
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Component list

Component List


R1 = 1.8kΩ

R2 = 3.3kΩ

R3,R4,R5,R6,R7,R10 = 4.7kΩ

R8,R9,R11 = 1kΩ

R12,R14 = 470Ω

R13 = 100Ω

P1 = 4.7kΩ preset, horizontal

P2 = 10kΩ preset, horizontal



C1 = 100µF 50V, 3.5mm pitch

C2,C3,C4,C5,C8,C9 = 100nF/50V, X7R, 0.2'' pitch

C6,C7 = 22pF 50V, C0G/NP0, 2.5mm pitch



IC1 = MC7805

IC2 = PIC18F26K22, programmed, Elektor Store # 180341-41

IC3 = 74HCT14 Schmitt-trigger inverter

IC4 = TLC272CP, double JFET opamp

IC5,IC6* = TCRT5000, IR reflective sensor (not PCB-mounted)

IC5,IC6* = TSOP4838, remote control receiver, 38kHz (not PCB-mounted)

LED1,LED2 = LED, yellow, 3mm

LED3 = LED, red, 3mm

LED4,LED5* = TSUS5400 IR LED (not PCB-mounted)

T1,T2 = BC547C



LCD1 = 2x16 character LCD with backlight, Elektor Store # 120061-74

LCD1' = 1x16 way socket, vertical

LCD'' = 1x16 pin header, vertical.

S1 = pushbutton, 24V, 50mA, 6x6 mm

ENC1 = EC12E2424407, incremental rotary encoder with push-switch, 12mm, vertical

X1 = 16MHz quartz crystal

K1 = power supply connector, 1.95mm pin

K2 = 9-pin D-sub PCB-mounting connector, female

K3 * = 6-pin pinheader, 0.1'' pitch

IC socket, DIP-28, small (IC2)

IC socket, DIP-14 (IC3)

IC socket, DIP-8 (IC4)

9-pin D-sub connector, male, cable mounting

Standoff with bolt M3 x 10 mm

Bolt, M3 x 5 mm

Spring washer, M3

Nut, M3

PCB, Elektor Store # 180431-1 V1.1


* = see text

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